When adding a link in the WP visual post editor you have to click the settings after adding the link and then click the Open link in a new tab to have it add a link with a target in a new window/tab.

I am looking for a way to have this automatically checked by default. Is there a filter or JavaScript code to do this?

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2 Answers 2


Add this function in your theme's functions.php

function my_enqueue($hook) {
    if ('post.php' != $hook ) {
    wp_enqueue_script('my_custom_script', get_template_directory_uri() . '/js/myscript.js');

add_action('admin_enqueue_scripts', 'my_enqueue');`

In myscript.js place this code

  jQuery('#wp-link-target').prop("checked", true);

It worked for me.

  • Thanks I was thinking this might be the only way to do it as I found the WordPress file after posting this that creates that form and saw that it does not fire any hook or filters. Thanks
    – JasonDavis
    Jun 25, 2016 at 17:14
  • Where the myscript.js part can be found? Mar 5, 2022 at 7:49

The accepted answer didn't work for me so i digged a bit and found an event that is triggered when the link popin is displayed. Keep the PHP and replace the JS with this.

    $(document).on('wplink-open', function() {
        if ($('#wp-link-url').val() === '') {
            $('#wp-link-target').prop("checked", true);

I didn't find a way to check if the link is new or edited. So i added a check for the URL, if it's empty we can safely assume it's a new link. Hope that help someone.

  • Where does the 2nd part of the code go? Mar 5, 2022 at 7:58
  • 1
    What second part ? You put the same PHP than in the accepted response and in myscript.js you put the code above. Mar 7, 2022 at 10:30

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